Bridge 108

47North: Amazon. Feb. 2020. 204p. ISBN 9781542006071. $24.95. SF
Set against a backdrop of catastrophic climate change, this story sees people desperately fleeing the south of Europe to seek sanctuary in England. But England has closed its borders and instituted strict immigration sanctions, including detention centers and indentured-work camps. Caleb and his mother have nearly reached England from southern Europe when they become separated during an immigration raid. Caleb meets a seemingly kind woman with a motorbike and is spirited away to a run-down British enclave where he’s forced to sew clothes from recycled textiles. Without a loving parent to guide him, Caleb will have to make decisions about his own welfare, but will he always be at the mercy of a system set against him?
VERDICT Arthur C. Clark Award-winning Charnock (Dreams Before the Start of Time) provides a window into a future that feels all too near in this post-Brexit world. From the fears and repercussions of intense drought to the politics and panic of immigration, Caleb’s story, sadly, rings true.
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